What Teachers Do

teacher student

Mark Naison: Teachers are some of the most selfless, generous people in our nation. They deserve better than what they are currently getting from our political leaders and mass media

Anatomy of an Apology

goodbye rush

Steve Hochstadt: Some people talk nasty and nastier, hoping to prevent the next Sandra Fluke from expressing herself. Bigmouths thrive in the silence of others.

What Occupy Wall Street Has Accomplished in Two Short Months

occupy nyc

Mark Naison: While Occupy Wall Street and its spinoffs around the nation have certainly not developed “leaders” who articulate its goals to the media or negotiate with public officials, it has already registered a formidable list of accomplishments for a movement this young.

Occupy Wall Street: American as Apple Pie

crosby and nash

Those loud right-wing voices in our political discourse that are trying to make Occupy Wall Street look like something “foreign” to American culture are barking up the wrong tree. When David Crosby and Graham Nash recently showed up at Zuccotti Park for an impromptu sing-along with the protesters they linked OWS with the long American tradition of resistance to [...]

For Progressives, Debt Ceiling “Deal” Was a Real Downer

wall-street-vulture-wide

Joseph Palermo: The last-minute lobbying by the titans of industry and finance shows that President Obama might have had more leverage over the Republicans in the debt ceiling “negotiations” than he chose to exercise. We now breathlessly await the arrival of the “Super Committee,” the tragedy that follows the farce.

The Vast TV Wasteland

minow-wide

Brent Budowsky: This wasteland is worsened by waves of negative campaign advertising paid for by partisans and special interests, and by many TV “commentators” who repeat the mudslinging and spin instead of the serious discussions voters and viewers hunger for.

Being Right or Being Good

debate

Steve Hochstadt: The ability to offer anonymous and uncensored opinions to the world, that is now offered for free by the internet, has greatly increased the forcefulness with which more and more people assert their superior knowledge and everyone else’s confusion.

A Time for Action — Not Servility

jeff cohen

Norman Solomon and Jeff Cohen: While Washington pundits are talking up a new civility, many progressives are bracing for the old servility — a bipartisanship that is servile to a corporate elite that is unquenchably greedy and more powerful than ever.

When Violence Comes From the Right, Media Hear No Evil

Joseph Palermo: Despite the work of media watchdog groups like Media Matters, and groups that track right-wing extremism, like the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Anti-Defamation League, the corporate media insist on ignoring the influence of the Far Right’s toxic rhetorical drumbeat of hatred and anger in promoting a political context where violence can break out.

Civility and Political Discourse after the Tucson Shooting

obama-giffords

Walter Moss: President Obama has often been criticized for being too ready to compromise or for not displaying enough political passion for just causes. No doubt, he has not always perfectly calibrated the right mix of passion and compromise. But there is also no doubt, at least in my mind, that he is correct in calling for more civility in politics.

Discombobulated Wingnuttery

If a person is uneducated to such a degree that articulating their political views rationally and coherently is not possible, then emotion is all they can bring to the table. If a person knows little of history and little of the dynamics of human behavior and politics, then any and all arguments that they don’t fully understand are perceived as an assault on their identity.

The New Normal: High Unemployment

Norman Solomon: With unemployment so common that it’s widely seen as a long-term fact of life, a tacit fatalism has seeped into political discourse and the mass media. In short, what should be unacceptable has gained acceptance.

Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon: Politicians Who Love Their Job More Than Their Country Led Arizona Astray

Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon

Andrea Christina Nill: Gordon described a “perfect storm” consisting of three factors. First, the elimination of the Fairness Doctrine radicalized the political discourse. Second, beefed up border security along the California and Texas borders with Mexico redirected smugglers and cartel operatives toward Arizona. And lastly, the economic recession. Gordon explains that “politicians who love their job a lot more than they love their state or their country” exploited the three factors and led Arizona into the predicament it’s in now.

This Week in the LA Progressive: 2 May to 8 May 2010

With articles by Robert Reich, Joseph Palermo, Charley James, Randy Shaw, Nomiki Konst, Rev. Irene Monroe, Mario Solis-Marich, Anthony Asadullah Samad, Georgianne Nienaber, Andrea Nill, Tracy Emblem, Wayne Williams, Cathy Cockrell, Tina Dupuy, Ron Wolff, Tom Degan, Shamus Cooke, Michael Sigman, David A. Love, Sharon Kyle, Bob Letcher, Robert Illes, and Ivan Eland

Michael Brown Spins the Gulf Oil Spill Catastrophe

michael heckuva job brown

Joseph Palermo: So that’s what our political discourse has sunk to? Discredited figures like Brownie are on TV jockeying for partisan gain, milking a national tragedy that is probably going to change forever the ecosystem of the Gulf Coast? Brownie uses a catastrophe that threatens many of the nation’s most important waterways and will probably be a grave setback to any national economic recovery to score pitiful political points against the Democrats? Who are these people?

War Politics: Numb and Number

Senator Wayne Morse

Norman Solomon: While the escalating disaster of war in Afghanistan keeps setting deadly blazes, the few anti-war voices on Capitol Hill usually sound like people whispering “Fire!”

Listening to Palin

Palin_Sarah

Robin Lakoff: Palin is a complex mix of preacherly earnestness and twangy cowgirl. She really cares about what she is saying and those she is addressing – but not in some heavy-handed do-gooder way – rather, like a cheery, natural gal. So she’s a mommy – but also a babe.

Obama, Never Mind FDR, How about JKP?

James K. Polk, 1795-1849, 11th President of the United States, 1845-1849

Robert Illes: Anyway, I’ll take a kickass Obama for four years than a watery Obama for eight. Yes FDR is a good model, but the real lesson of getting things done may be the obscure guy who came along precisely 100 years earlier.

Forty More Days

James Carville

As long as the Democratic leadership insists on being directed by the supposed wisdom of this advice, they will continue down their present path to an electoral train wreck next November as bad or worse than the one they suffered in 1994, when they played their cards the same way.

Fascism: Are We There Yet?

fascism

It is up to us to defend and improve our democracy more effectively than the Germans of 80 years ago. This implies not only vigilance and willingness to do political battle, but as important, a willingness to acknowledge and respond to the real concerns of honest conservatives who might otherwise be seduced by Rush Limbaugh and his colleagues.

Bill O’Reilly-Keith Olbermann Feud Ends with a Corporate Handshake?

Bill O'Reilly, Keith Olbermann, Rupert Murdock, and Jeff Immeldt (clockwise from top left)

Olbermann differs from O’Reilly in that he cares about truth and falsehood, and he understands the distinction between journalism and propaganda. Bill O’Reilly is a liar and a demagogue and a right-wing propagandist.

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